Indonesia eases coal export ban that rattled global market

Tuesday, 11 January 2022 03:26 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

JAKARTA, AFP: Indonesia, the world’s top exporter of thermal coal, on Monday said it would ease a ban on exports of the fuel that it imposed to head off looming blackouts.

14 ships loaded with coal and destined for overseas markets would be allowed to leave Indonesia, Coordinating Minister Luhut said in a statement.

But all other barges with coal for export must divert their cargo to power stations in need of supply, the statement said, adding that the government will re-evaluate exports on Wednesday.

The 1 January ban on shipments of coal used in power generation threw the market into disarray.

Prices of the fuel lurched higher as ships laden with hundreds of thousands of tons of the mineral destined for major markets in Japan, China and India sat in ports and all new production was diverted to domestic power stations.

The Philippines has urged Indonesia to lift its ban, with Manila warning on Monday the policy would have a “detrimental” impact on the coal-reliant country.

Japan issued a similar appeal last week.

Indonesia’s export ban was imposed after coal miners failed to meet their obligation to set aside 25% of output for the domestic market.